Heads of CIS countries’ security and intelligence agencies met in Belarus and signed on September 13 an agreement to create a council of the heads of those institutions. To be subordinated to the CIS Council of Heads of State and to the Prime Ministers’ Council, the new body is supposed to coordinate the countries’ efforts in combating organized crime, contraband, drug and arms trafficking, and illegal migration. An additional protocol obligates the parties to assist each other in searching and apprehending wanted criminals and criminal suspects on each others’ territories. (Interfax, Itar-Tass, September 13 and 14) On September 4 the secret services agreed to set up a joint data bank, to be coordinated by Russia’s Federal Security Service, on organized crime. Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan did not sign the September 13 agreement.
France, Germany Back NATO Membership for Poland.